This spring, take a look outside at the sidewalks - there may just be a war going on.
The main belligerents: Tetramorium caespitum, also known as Pavement Ants. Although active all year long and with really no down period throughout the seasons, springtime is a particularly active period for Pavement Ants. When the weather warms, colonies head out in search of new areas to conquer, and that can range anywhere from a trip into your kitchen to an all-out assault on a neighboring colony for control of the territory.
Regardless of how exactly Pavement Ants are making themselves known on your property, the underlying need to keep them away from your home and your family remains. Fortunately, there are a few key ways to keep Pavement Ants as far from your springtime fun as possible.
Top Tips for Keeping Pavement Ants Away
Small (1/8” or less in size), typically red-brown in color, and usually hungry for just about anything they can find, Pavement Ants are actually slightly unusual compared to other ant varieties commonly found around New England.
Colonies of Pavement Ants tend to have multiple queens, and colonies can forage up to 30 feet from their nest entrances. Nesting sites can typically be identified by their small, crater-like openings, which can be numerous for even a single underground nest.
While durable and determined in their efforts to set up a nest near food, water, and shelter, Pavement Ants are not inevitable in your home or on your property. Here are some of the most effective ways to keep them from getting comfortable:
Keep a Close Watch on Likely Problem Areas
The name “Pavement Ant” doesn’t come from nowhere - most likely, Tetramorium caespitum can be found along cracks in pavement, in the gaps between sidewalk panels, or under and around rocks within your garden. Be sure to keep a close eye out around driveways, walkways, patios, stone retaining walls, and even around your home’s foundation for signs of a colony.
Once you’ve identified those likely nesting areas and followed the line of explorers back to the initial nesting site, it’s time to take action to prevent them from getting any closer to your home - or to take out the colony altogether.
Remove Any Temptation for Pavement Ants To Get Comfortable
Like most other springtime pests, Pavement Ants emerge from a long winter ready and able to expand the colony as much as possible. To do that, they’ll need access to two basic needs: food and water.
Being the season of outdoor picnics, barbecues, and beautiful gardens, springtime makes finding food and water left out in the open particularly easy for Pavement Ants - and the more they find, the more likely they are to return. Be sure to keep standing water (including that left from hoses or around flowerpots) and food (including picnic crumbs or fallen fruit) to a minimum and you will drastically decrease the odds of Pavement Ants finding a reason to stick around.
Consider Utilizing An Effective Bait Solution
If you have noticed Pavement Ants setting up a nest near or on your property, it may already be too late for effective exclusion tactics. At this point, it’s critical to take immediate action to actually strike back against the colony - and bait traps can offer a highly effective solution for early-stage infestations.
Many bait solutions operate on a delayed timeline, allowing explorers and gatherers to consume the bait before returning back to the main colony, There, the oblivious ant will spread the solution to other ants and, eventually, to the queens, which will (hopefully) drastically impact the colony to the point of total elimination.
Because of the size and multi-queen nature of Pavenet Ant colonies, however, bait traps may not always be 100% effective at complete removal - in which case an experienced ant removal expert may be the best way to complete the job.
Contact An Ant Removal Expert For Assistance
For inexperienced or busy homeowners, the benefits of working with a trained, experienced ant removal professional can be numerous - not the least of which being the effective removal of the entire Pavement Ant colony. Otherwise, the nest may simple continue to rebound and grow time and time again - and that can mean repeated ant invasions for homeowners.
In cases involving particularly large, durable, or widespread Pavement Ant colonies, an experienced ant removal professional can help identify the main source of the infestation, provide thorough and discreet elimination services to completely remove the colony, and provide key tactics to prevent their return in the following weeks, months, and years.
Don’t Let your Summer Suffer from Pavement Ant Infestations
Whether you first notice Pavement Ants crawling along your walkway outside or along your kitchen floor indoors, simply ignoring them through the end of the season is just not an option - mainly, because they won’t quit as long as there is food, water, and shelter to benefit from.
If you’ve got Pavement Ants wreaking havoc on your driveway, sidewalk, or around your property, get in touch with our team at JP Pest Services and get your home on the path to an ant-free spring and summer today - before the picnic season passes you by.